Business briefs: April 6, 2014 - Press-Republican: Local News

Business briefs: April 6, 2014

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Posted: Sunday, April 6, 2014 3:28 am

New engineer

PLATTSBURGH — Mark DeCrescente, P.E., of Engineering Ventures has been added to the Burlington, Vt., office servicing the North Country area.

DeCrescente has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Delaware and nine years of civil engineering experience. He is from the Philadelphia area and worked for most of his career there in private engineering consulting.

DeCrescente’s project experience ranges from commercial and institutional developments to residential subdivisions. He has experience in providing storm water management, erosion and sedimentation control, site grading, sanitary sewers and other utility design for various types of developments. He is currently working on projects for the Town of Peru, Adirondack Medical Center in Lake Placid and Saranac Lake, and a combined Department of Public Works/Fire District project for the Town of Westport.

He is currently a licensed professional engineer in Pennsylvania and is in the process of obtaining his professional license in Vermont and New York. 

Engineering Ventures PC is an experienced consulting engineering firm operating and licensed in Vermont, New Hampshire, New York and surrounding states. Select qualified professionals and technicians provide a broad range of civil-engineering services with specialties in structural and site engineering and planning. Serving both private and public clients, Engineering Ventures offers service from offices in Burlington and Lebanon, N.H.

For more information, visit

Agency honored

PLATTSBURGH — As a business leader and involved citizen in the Plattsburgh area, Allstate exclusive agency owner Timothy Ruscio has been designated an Allstate Premier Agency for 2014.

This designation is being presented to Ruscio for his outstanding business performance and commitment to putting customers at the center of his agency’s work. 

“The Premier Agency designation is not just about Timothy’s successful business results,” said Eva McIntee, Allstate New York’s field vice president. “The honor also demonstrates Timothy’s commitment in being accessible to customers and using knowledge to help ensure customers have the insurance products they need to protect themselves and their family.” 

Ruscio’s agency is located at 25 Plattsburgh Plaza and can be reached at 562-5450 or

The Allstate Corporation is the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer, serving approximately 16 million households through its Allstate, Encompass, Esurance and Answer Financial brand names and Allstate Financial business segment. Allstate branded insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services are offered through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial representatives, as well as via, and 1-800 Allstate.

Bilingual website

PLATTSBURGH — Allegiant has launched a new website to better assist Canadians with their U.S. travel plans. features route maps and travel information in English and French for Canadians who choose to save on their vacation by making a short drive to a U.S. airport south of the Canadian border. 

With a focus on key cross-border airports, Canadians can select a nearby airport served by Allegiant and find all the necessary information one might need. The new user-friendly microsite features frequently asked questions specifically targeted at Canadian needs; U.S. border airport information including parking, accommodations and restaurants; and estimated driving times from Canadian cities. 

The carrier flies out of cities just south of the Canadian border such as Plattsburgh. For a full list of the cross-border airports Allegiant serves, visit Canadian travelers can find nonstop flights to their favorite vacation destinations for as little as $89 one way.

“We are pleased to offer a convenient and easy-to-use site to address questions unique to our Canadian customers,” said Scott Allard, Allegiant Travel Co. chief information officer. “We are confident they will appreciate access to a bilingual Canadian site to better assist with information about Allegiant’s nonstop flights from border-city airports to several sunny destinations and the value of bundling their air, hotel and car rental reservations together.”

Allegiant has been named one of America’s 100 Best Small Companies by Forbes Magazine for four consecutive years.

Show attended

PLATTSBURGH — Representatives from the Adirondack Coast Visitors Bureau are continuing their aggressive outreach, displaying at Ottawa’s Travel and Vacation Show for the second year at the Ottawa Convention Center April 5 and 6. The World is put on display at the Travel and Vacation Show as over 20,000 attendees learn what the Adirondack Coast offers visitors.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the show, which will have over 200 travel and vacation exhibits with over 50 countries represented. Visitors can find a variety of vacation options, from weekend getaways to trips to exciting overseas destinations. At the show, which is being attended by Kristy Kennedy, director of the bureau, and Lisa Dupee, sales coordinator for the Best Western Inn & Suites at Smithfield, the bureau will be touting all the area has to offer to leisure travelers including the Adirondack Coast Wine Trail, cycling, camping, fishing and the Battle of Plattsburgh Bicentennial Commemoration Weekend.

“We are extremely excited to be attending the Ottawa Travel and Vacation Show for the second year,” Kennedy said. “We have had tremendous success in the Montreal market and focusing on Ottawa is the ideal next step for our marketing efforts. We look forward to meeting the attendees and introducing them to the Adirondack Coast.”

The bureau is also continuing its outreach by further improving, the official website for Adirondack Coast tourism. The website now features an Adirondack Coast blog that will deliver a richer user experience, fulfilling more of the traveler’s planning needs. 

The blog has many community contributors writing about their fields of expertise including orchard blogger Shannon Rulfs, manager of Rulfs Orchard; fishing blogger Mickey Maynard, owner of Lake Champlain Angler Fishing Charters; kayak blogger Patty Husband, owner of The Kayak-Shack; resident Adirondack Coast blogger Ben Bradford; and many more.

Visit the Adirondack Coast blog at

Grant received

PLATTSBURGH — The Red Cross of Northeastern New York (NENY) was recently awarded a $25,000 grant from the State Farm insurance company. Of the total award, $15,000 will go to Red Cross preparedness programs and $10,000 will go toward disaster response throughout the 17-county NENY region.

“We are extremely grateful to State Farm for awarding us this grant, and we are looking forward to using the funds to help people prepare for disasters and assist them when they happen,” said Gary Striar, CEO for the American Red Cross Northeastern New York Region. “State Farm is a great partner, and we appreciate their support of these important programs.”

The grants are from State Farm’s Good Neighbor Citizenship Company Grants, which support education and safety training offered by non-profits, educational institutions and government agencies. Disaster preparedness and recovery are two of the eligible safety grant categories. 

“State Farm is proud to support the Red Cross as it helps the people of New York recover from the unexpected,” said State Farm Community Specialist Naomi Johnson. “Like a good neighbor, the Red Cross is there to help people when the unthinkable happens.”

Funds will be used to support preparedness training, such as Be Red Cross Ready, which teaches individuals, families, businesses and students the basic steps that should be taken to prepare for emergencies. Other preparedness programs include Children Alone Preparedness Education (CAPE), which teaches children to safely be alone at home, and Citizen CPR, which provides basic, hands-only CPR training in 20 minutes. Last year, the Red Cross NENY Preparedness Team trained nearly 19,600 individuals in disaster preparedness.

Funds will also support Red Cross disaster-response efforts, from assisting families after house fires with lodging, food and clothing, to larger responses like floods and storms. Last year, NENY responded to 374 disasters affecting 632 families across the region.

Designation earned

PLATTSBURGH — Melissa McManus, principal of Melissa McManus LLC, recently earned the designation of Certified Economic Developer (CEcD), a national recognition that denotes a mastery of principal skills in economic development, professional attainment and a commitment to personal and professional growth.

Melissa McManus LLC assists North Country communities in economic and community development strategic planning, funding acquisition and project implementation. 

The CEcD exam was administered by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) on March 22 and 23 in Alexandria at the Westin Alexandria. The CEcD designation recognizes qualified and dedicated practitioners in the economic-development field and sets the standard of excellence within the profession. 

Candidates must pass a rigorous and comprehensive three-part, two-day examination, which tests a practitioner’s knowledge, proficiency and judgment in the key areas of economic development, including business retention and expansion, marketing, finance, workforce development, community development, real estate, strategic planning, tech-led economic development and management.

As highly competent economic development practitioners, Certified Economic Developers work with public officials, business leaders and community members to create leadership to build upon and maximize the economic-development sector. Excellence in the profession improves the well being, quality of life and opportunities for individuals, businesses and communities.

There are currently 1,046 active CEcDs in the United States.

Appreciation Day

SCHROON LAKE — The Schroon Lake Office of Glens Falls National Bank and Trust Co. will host a luau-themed Community Appreciation Day on Friday.

The event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 1080 Main Street will include Hawaiian pizza, giant subs, salads, fruit and a chocolate fountain. Musician Mark Piper will perform songs on the ukulele around noon, and there will also be a visit from the Easter bunny, a scavenger hunt and other games and giveaways.

A basket raffle featuring beach items will raise funds for the Schroon Lake Food Pantry; monetary and canned-good donations for the nonprofit will be accepted throughout the day. In addition, the Schroon Lake Lions Club will be on-site selling chocolate bunnies.

For more information, call the Schroon Lake Office at 532-7121.

Glens Falls National Bank and Trust provides banking and financial services through 30 offices in Warren, Washington, Saratoga, Essex and Clinton counties. It hosts community events throughout the year as a way to show appreciation for its customers and neighbors and assist local causes.

Pet-supply drive

DANNEMORA — Dannemora Federal Credit Union is holding a Pet Supply Drive throughout the month of April to benefit the Adirondack Humane Society and the Elmore SPCA. The supply drive is being held in honor of April being Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month.

Items may be dropped off at any DFCU branch. The most needed items include dog, puppy, cat and kitten food (both dry and canned) and treats; cat and dog toys; non-clumping or non-scoopable cat litter; laundry detergent and unscented bleach; paper towels; dish soap; blankets and towels; and leashes and collars.

In addition to the Pet Supply Drive, DFCU staff will be volunteering at the Elmore SPCA in April and will hold an employee sponsored Jean Day to raise money for the SPCA. There will also be a pet photo contest to win a prize for both owner and pet on the DFCU Facebook page beginning in April.

DFCU Branch Office locations are at 50 State Road, Dannemora; 344 Tom Miller Road, Plattsburgh; 122 New York Road, Plattsburgh; and 10 Elm Street, Champlain.

Elected to board

LAKE PLACID — Adworkshop CEO Adele Connors has been elected to serve on the National Center for Employee Ownership’s (NCEO) Board of Directors, a diverse group of employee-ownership thought leaders from across the United States.

Founded in 1981, the California-based organization is a nonprofit membership and research organization providing information on employee ownership for companies and businesses wishing to make the transition to employee ownership or an ESOP (employee stock ownership plan).

“I’m deeply honored to be elected, and proud that Adworkshop’s ESOP, as well as the innovative work we do on behalf of our clients, is recognized on a national level,” Connors said.

As the authority and research source in the field of employee ownership, the NCEO provides valuable services to its vast roster of members, including webinars, training and education for more than 3,000 members.

Adworkshop is in the process of reinvigorating the NCEO’s branding with a message map and communications persona. Once these elements are in place, the team will flesh out the NCEO’s brand identity with a new logo, fonts and typeface for external and internal promotion. Following the NCEO’s rebranding, Adworkshop is slated to develop a series of state websites that will act as informational resources for employee-owned companies across the country.

For more information about Adworkshop and its ESOP, visit

New apparel store

SARANAC LAKE — Blue Line Design & Apparel is a new active-lifestyle company offering outdoor enthusiasts eco-conscious products.

Based in Saranac Lake, BLD launched in January with a spring/summer line of organic cotton t-shirts made in New York and Pennsylvania. Because the company believes in buying and sourcing local products as much as possible, BLD uses American-grown or fair-trade imported organic cotton and partners with two New York State companies to manufacture and silk-screen its t-shirts.

Founder Ben Chamberlain conceived BLD during a winter summit of Phelps Mountain. “In all the years I’ve spent in the Adirondacks, I couldn’t find one t-shirt with a cool design, or that wasn’t made overseas,” said Chamberlain, an avid Adirondack hiker, paddler, camper and outdoor enthusiast.

Descending Phelps Mountain, “I decided to make my own,” said Chamberlain, who studied illustration at Pratt Institute in Manhattan. Chamberlain began sketching initial designs over the Thanksgiving holiday and launched BLD in January, choosing Saranac Lake as its home base.

BLD’s business model includes an economic commitment to the Adirondack Park. It has partnered with the Adirondack Mountain Club to give 1 percent of revenue to ADK to help protect and preserve the park.

“ADK is proud to partner with an Adirondack entrepreneur who has married the values of economic development with ecological and environmental conservation,” said Deb Zack, director of membership and development. “BLD strives for the lightest carbon footprint possible in all the stages of making a t-shirt.”

BLD’s t-shirts include four designs: Paddler, Newt, Trekker and Black Bear and are offered in men’s, women’s and youth sizes. The company will introduce additional products, including sweatshirts, hats and technical clothing this summer and fall. BLD products are available at the company’s website,, and in various Adirondack retail outlets.

Job Fair

PLATTSBURGH —  The North Country Chamber of Commerce Job Fair will be held on April 23 at the West Side Ballroom, 253 New York Road, Plattsburgh, from 4 to 8 p.m.

Co-sponsored by the North Country Chamber of Commerce, OneWorkSource, North Country Workforce Investment Board, JSEC, Hometown Radio, Hall Communications, Plattsburgh-North Country Service Corp. and WPTZ-TV, attendees will have the opportunity to find out what jobs are available in the region.

Local companies will have representatives on hand to accept resumes, give out applications, set up interviews, and/or talk about career opportunities with their organization. Some of the organizations participating are Advocacy and Resource Center, Camoplast Solideal, Casella Waste, Centers for Care, Charter Communications/Business, CVPH Medical Center, Dana’s Downtown Grill, ETS, Inc.,FedEx Ground/Home Delivery, The Galley at Westport Marina, Glens Falls National Bank & Trust Company, Hall Communications, Heartland Payment Systems, Hometown Radio Inc. and IEC Holden Inc.

Also, Johns Manville, Liberty Tax Service, Lowe’s Home Improvement, Manpower, Miner Institute, Mold-Rite Plastics LLC, New York Army National Guard, North Country Workforce Partnership Inc., Residential Resources, Spherion Staffing, SUNY Plattsburgh, Westaff, Woodmen Of The World Life Insurance, WPTZ-TV and others will be included.

Booths are still available for North Country Chamber members and associate members for $295 and non-members at $395.

For more information, contact the chamber at 563-1000 or visit